The CARICOM Agreement on Social Security was signed in Georgetown, Guyana on 1 March 1996 and came into effect on 1 April 1997. As of this date persons can thus apply for benefits under the Agreement.
The Agreement is intended to protect CARICOM Nationals’ entitlement to benefits and provide equality of treatment when moving from one country to another.
The Agreement is seen as key in facilitating the free movement of labour within the CARIOM Single Market, but it applies to all persons who are moving to work or have worked in two or more countries that have implemented the Agreement.
The Agreement is in effect in the following CARICOM Member States:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- The Bahamas
- St. Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- St. Vincent and The Grenadines, and
- Trinidad and Tobago
Under this Reciprocal Agreement, insured persons are entitled to benefits from one or more of the Social Security Organisations in the various CARICOM Member States for which they qualify.
A CARICOM National who is a wage earner, must be insured in the member state where he or she is employed and must therefore make contributions to the respective social security organization. He or she is entitled to the same benefits as the nationals of the host country.
The CARICOM Agreement on Social Security came into effect on April 1st, 1997. It protects all entitlements to long term benefits by providing for the totaling of all the contributions which were paid to the respective Social Security Organizations in Member States, where a national previously worked. Suriname is the exception since it does not have a comparable social security system.
For more information, kindly visit www.caricom.org